We are urgently asking for your financial support to bring a Syrian refugee family to safety in Canada.
The Al Fares/Al Taha family is considered at a very high risk of persecution by the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR). This is because the mother, who is widowed, is the head of the household and because her adult daughter, who escaped her abusive husband, now lives with her mother and younger siblings.
Amnesty International reports that “Syrian refugee women face risks of serious human rights violations and abuses in Lebanon, including gender-based violence and exploitation, and those that are heads of their households are at particular risk”.
In 2012, Akyla Al Fares, her husband and their children fled the war in Syria for Beirut, Lebanon. The trauma of war is compounded by life as refugees. Living conditions are difficult. Akyla’s husband was fatally electrocuted making repairs to their makeshift home, in front of her and their youngest children. The family was directly affected by the 2020 Beirut port explosions. Food and electricity are now in short supply, making day-to-day survival almost impossible.
But the family perseveres. The dream of coming to Canada is what keeps them going.
Canada offers hope, especially for the children’ s future. Young Hussein and Mohammad have never really had the chance to go to school. There are no playgrounds where they live. Sometimes when the family has access to wifi, a group of Canadian kids sends them messages of hope. You can watch a beautiful video of this here . Husni who is now 21 wants to find a way to support his mother and his siblings in Canada. Fatema, who is 20, dreams of getting an education.
Now, thanks to the hard work of the family’s sponsor, Grace United Church, and many volunteers, including a coalition of Muslim, Jewish, Christian and queer youth groups, we have good news to share: the Canadian Embassy has indicated that the family's arrival is imminent!
Your financial support is needed to make this happen. And GoFundMe donations (corporate and individual) are eligible for tax receipts from the Church!
We can’t stop war. But we can help one family at a time. Can you join us in helping this family?
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” (Attributed to Margaret Mead)